THE bravery and empathy shown by Ian Collins as he prevented a vulnerable man from setting himself alight, is truly amazing.

He was adamant he isn't a hero when he spoke to us yesterday and initially had been reluctant to go ahead with the story.

And while that shows even further just how selfless he is, we thought it was important to get what he did out there.

To keep calm and continue speaking to a suicidal stranger with a petrol tank and lighter, who he knew at any second could get spooked with disastrous consequences, is nothing short of remarkable.

He then had the presence of mind to kick away the man's lighter as he dowsed himself head to foot in petrol.

This was all done while an estimated 15 police officers edged closer in the darkness, while other emergency services and security staff surrounded the scene.

It's not anything like what Ian has dealt with before and he doesn't have any official training in relation to that sort of situation.

What it does show is that anyone at any moment can make a difference.

Well done, Ian.

If you are suffering with suicidal thoughts, you can contact Samaritans in confidence for free from any phone on 116 123, even a mobile without credit.

Or you can email or go to to find details of your local branch of Samaritans where you can talk to one of its volunteers face to face.